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Colleges are secretly using social media data to rank applicants

Employers nowadays either ask for, or simply look for, a job applicant’s “social media profiles” – to vet them for whatever they feel needs to be vetted for. So in that context – why not “start often, start early” – in other words, why not subject college students to the same process even before they hit the job market? Someone’s surely thought of that. Or even, as the Washington Post suggests – go as deep as weeding out prospective students’ ability to even enroll in a university-based on some “rich data”. At least 44 US colleges “work with outside consulting…

The “Safe Drivers Act” Is A Real-Time National Driver Surveillance Program

A new Senate bill would create a real-time national driver surveillance program that would allow law enforcement to know anything and everything about a driver at the click of a button. A recent article in WCVB Channel 5 revealed that the “Safe Drivers Act” is designed for one purpose and that is to share everything a motorist has ever done with law enforcement nationwide. “Outside the Danvers branch of the Registry of Motor Vehicles on Tuesday, Congressman Seth Moulton publicly announced legislation he’s filed in hopes of making it easier for traffic safety officials to share information about drivers across…

News from The Constitution-Free Zone: Border Patrol Using Biometrics for “Citizenship Checks” in Maine

For a number of years now, I have been chronicling the ever-widening use of “The Constitution-Free Zone” by Border Patrol agents in the name of immigration enforcement. Papers Please: “Daily Citizenship Checks” on Buses Across Maine Highlight Constitution-Free Zone New York’s Constitution-Free Zone Leading to Warrantless Bus Searches and Detentions Greyhound Bus Under Fire As More Reports Of Immigration Searches and Detentions Surface Citizenship Checkpoints Start to Spread Across The Constitution-Free Zone The label of “Constitution Free” was given by the ACLU to describe the area that extends 100 miles from the border around the entire United States and holds…

To Stop Threat of ‘For-Profit Surveillance,’ Rights Groups Demand End to Partnerships That Give Cops Access to Amazon Ring Data

A coalition of rights groups Tuesday called on elected officials around the country at the state and federal level to end Amazon Ring’s surveillance partnerships with law enforcement due to the “serious threat” the collaborations pose to civil liberties. In an open letter, 36 civil rights groups warned that Ring’s doorbell surveillance technology “creates a seamless and easily automated experience for police to request and access footage without a warrant, and then store it indefinitely.” “In the absence of clear civil liberties and rights-protective policies to govern the technologies and the use of their data, once collected, stored footage can…

Identity theft’s newest target: your face

A lot of companies struggle with bias in the workplace, but for many big tech companies, the problem is a bit more extreme. Why, because it’s not just the human beings that are racist, a lot of their algorithms are biased too. This is the problem that Google reportedly was trying to solve when they got themselves into their latest privacy scandal, tricking black and brown “volunteers” to submit to 3D face scans. According to the New York Daily News, Google contractors told these biometric test subjects that they were just going to play a “selfie game”, and they’d even…

Forget Facial Recognition: DHS’s New Database, HART, Also Uses Scars, Tattoos, and Your VOICE to ID You. And Amazon Is Storing All the Data.

These days, you can’t really go anywhere without encountering cameras.  Going into a store? Chances are there are security cameras. Getting money at an ATM? More cameras. Driving through the streets of a city? More cameras still. Your neighbors may have those doorbells from Amazon that are surveilling the entire neighborhood. And many of these cameras are tied into facial recognition databases, or the footage can be quite easily compared there if “authorities” are looking for somebody. But as it turns out, it isn’t just facial recognition we have to worry about. DHS has a new recognition system called HART.…

Gene editing to protect US military: How the US could create a race of super soldiers

A US Department of Defense agency is currently looking at ways to alter one’s biology to provide adequate protection for personnel from chemical and biological attacks. There will come a time where sci-fi movies write themselves. These moving pictures wouldn’t even be referred to as science-fiction, as they would more or less be based on reality. Where it isn’t yet based on reality, it has to be said that we are getting to a stage now where it is probably only a matter of time until that concept has been actualized by government-funded scientists who seek to aid the US…

DHS Collecting Migrants’ DNA First Step in ‘Total Population Control’ of US Citizens

Surveillance and human rights concerns have been raised after senior officials with the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) revealed a proposed rule this week mandating that migrants of all ages detained after entering the US illegally have their DNA collected and stored for future records. Amid reports of US President Donald Trump calling for migrants to be shot in their legs and requesting a moat filled with snakes and alligators at the US-Mexico border, senior DHS officials requesting anonymity have provided new details on policies that may actually see the light of day. Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, the…

14 Billion Police License Plate Database, Knows Where You Are In Real-Time

Forget everything you have ever heard about police license plate readers and public safety, because it is all a lie. Three major Automatic License Plate Reader (ALPR) companies have created a mind-boggling database of 14 billion license plates that allows law enforcement to track anyone in real-time. The Digital Recognition Network (DRN) has a database of over 8 billion license plates and boasts about sending customers (law enforcement) live vehicle location alerts. “If you think there is nothing you can do to automatically detect vehicles, think again. DRN’s Live Alerts, part of the DRNsights for Insurance solution, uses vehicle location data…

Andrew Yang proposes policy that would classify all digital data as personal property

Andrew Yang is a Democratic presidential candidate for the 2020 elections. Yang is also an entrepreneur and founder of Venture for America, a nonprofit organization that helps young people to get the skills they need to work for startups in emerging cities of the US. On top of that, Andrew Yang’s meme game is not the only thing that is on point, as the policy proposals of his party are also a point in favor. In this sense, Yang just proposed the “Data as a property right” policy, which has the goal of protecting the online data of the US…

Singapore enforces new law – spreading fake news could carry a 10 year prison sentence

Singapore will become the latest government to make what it deems to be “fake news” illegal from tomorrow when its draconian “Protection From Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act” becomes law. When the law was tabled in April, Jeff Paine of the Asia Internet Coalition warned that it was “the most far-reaching legislation of its kind to date.” Journalism professor Cherian George also raised concerns that the effects of this legislation on free speech could even be worse than the country’s controversial criminal defamation laws which puts independent journalists, activists, and critics at risk of being imprisoned by the government. However,…

House Arrest An Odd Twist Of Orwellian Oversight

Over the years technology has greatly expanded the ability of government to watch the movements and control individuals. During this time I have encountered several people that have run afoul of the law in some way or other the way the legal system deals with people is also changing. While many of us see house arrest as a great option to throwing minor offenders into a prison system filled with hardcore criminals it does have shades of totalitarianism. A recent article on this site explored the difficulty society is having in getting people to obey its rules and laws. Without…

Apple bans an app because Hong Kong protesters might use it to avoid the murderous, out of control police

Hkmap Live is a crowdsourced app that uses reports from a Telegram group to track the locations of protesters, police, and traffic, as well as the use of antipersonnel weapons like tear gas, mass arrests of people wearing t-shirts associated with the protest movement, and mass transit closures in proximity to demonstrations (it’s a bit like Sukey, the British anti-kettling app). The escalation of indiscriminate violence by Hong Kong’s police has driven mainstream opposition to the Chinese state and the Hong Kong authorities. The protests continue to grow, the the police continue to attack families, elderly people, bystanders, and the…

Google to face mass action over claims it accessed 4 MILLION iPhone users’ data

The Court of Appeal in London has given the go-ahead for mass action against Google over claims it illegally accessed the data of over 4 million iPhone users, overturning an earlier high court ruling against redress. In their legal action, claimants accused Google of accessing internet browsing data on Apple iPhones by bypassing Safari’s privacy settings between June 2011 and February 2012.  Mishcon de Reya, the legal firm acting for one of the representative claimants, described the appeals court move as “groundbreaking” as it “confirms a number of important legal principles under Data Protection law,” and could even mark the…

Betrayed: District Attorney’s Are Running “Advanced Public Surveillance Networks”

The public trust has been betrayed. District Attorney’s (DA) are using CCTV cameras and license plate readers to create public surveillance networks. According to U.S. Legal, the definition of a DA is “to investigate alleged crimes in cooperation with law enforcement.” Not a single one of the 22 definitions includes running a public surveillance network. What is happening in Pittsburgh’s Allegheny County is not an aberration, it is fast becoming commonplace. Last month, Lancaster Onlinerevealed that the DA’s office has created an “advanced public surveillance network.” “The district attorney for Pennsylvania’s second-most-populous county, Stephen Zappala Jr. has assembled a network of advanced surveillance cameras…

New federal rules will limit police searches of DNA ancestry databases

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) this week released new rules that limit when police can access family tree DNA databases to identify crime suspects. This new genealogy policy is the first ever at the federal level to address how online genetic databases sold as services to the public can be used in law enforcement. Here’s an excerpt from the DoJ advisory published on Tuesday, which focuses on the use of DNA to solve violent crimes: As genetic genealogy websites become more popular and individuals continue to voluntarily submit their DNA or enter their genetic profiles onto publically available genetic…

Amazon, LinkedIn, and WhatsApp join big tech anti-terror coalition for fighting “extremist” content online

Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, and YouTube have announced today that their Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism (GIFCT), a consortium that’s dedicated to preventing “extremist” and “terrorist” content online, will be expanding. According to Facebook, as part of the expansion, GIFCT will become an independent organization with dedicated staff, dedicated technology, and an executive director. Amazon, LinkedIn, and WhatsApp will also be joining the forum. Going forward, GIFCT’s efforts will be focused on preventing, responding to, and learning from “extremist” and “terrorist” content on digital platforms. According to the announcement, GIFCT has already reached its 2019 goal of “collectively contributing more…

Hidden Cameras Use AI to Monitor Phone Use …

Australia has announced the roll-out of an artificial intelligence system which analyzes images of vehicles to detect illicit use of cell phones by drivers. The state of New South Wales (NSW) revealed a pilot program had checked 8.5 million vehicles between January and June of 2019, finding that over 100,000 drivers had allegedly violated mobile phone usage laws. “The mobile phone detection camera program will now be rolled out from late 2019 and will include fixed and relocatable trailer-mounted cameras,” the NSW Centre for Road Safety declared in a statement. “Together, these cameras will target illegal mobile phone use anywhere,…

Detroit Police Commission Board Approves Use Of Facial Recognition Technology Despite National Backlash

The Detroit Board of Police Commissioners voted to approve the Detroit Police Department’s use of controversial facial recognition technology on the public, Courthouse News reported. According to the directive, police would be limited to using the system when officers have “reasonable suspicion” of home invasions and violent crimes involving incidents like shootings, sexual assaults and carjacking. Further, the system doesn’t have assess to check immigration status on individuals and was restricted from accessing live surveillance streaming video or any security camera device. Outside agencies would be allowed access to the information if needed after proper paperwork is filed. The order…

Home Depot And Lowe’s Accused Of Scanning Millions Of Customers Faces

Home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s have become partners in Big Brother’s ever expanding public surveillance program. Home Depot’s “You Can Do It. We Can Help” slogan should really say, “We Can Do It. We Can Help Big Brother.” And Lowe’s “Do It Right For Less. Start At Lowe’s” slogan should say, “Doing It Right And Identifying Every Customer, Starts At Lowe’s.” According to the Cook County Record, two recent class action lawsuits accuse Home Depot and Lowe’s of secretly using facial recognition to identify customers as soon as they enter their stores. On Sept. 4, 2019, a group of plaintiffs simultaneously filed…

Smart Faucets And Toilets Use Alexa To Listen To Your Conversations

It is hard to imagine a more intrusive home surveillance device than a faucet or toilet that listens to everyone’s conversations, but that is just what Delta Faucet and Kohler have done. Delta Faucet’s “Voice IQ” takes advantage of where lots of people like to congregate and turns it into an Alexa eavesdropping center. “Designed with the understanding that 20 percent of all WiFi-enabled homes are equipped with a connected home device, VoiceIQ Technology pairs with existing devices to dispense the exact amount of water needed, all with a simple voice command.” Delta lets Alexa decide how much water everyone gets.…

Louisiana Court Case Reveals Extensive Driver Tracking System…Louisiana trooper looks up the history of motorist movements to catch fandom suspect in a lie about his travels that day.

Louisiana uses automated license plate readers (ALPR, also known as ALPR) to identify and track every motorist entering the state. The system’s use in an everyday traffic stop was revealed after a state trooper used the extensive tracking database to catch a driver in a lie about his recent movements. That validity of the stop was challenged, but US District Judge James D. Cain Jr last month upheld its legitimacy. On Tuesday, Judge Cain set a November 4 trial date to fully resolve the case of Eric J. Richard, the man who had been tracked. Richard had been driving his…

Maryland Governor Endorses Surveillance Plane To Fly Above Baltimore Amid Murder Crisis

A new report from The Baltimore Sun shows Gov. Larry Hogan on Tuesday pledged $21 million to assist Baltimore City in their efforts to stop the spread of the homicide crisis that has completely engulfed the town. Hogan has also endorsed the use of a controversial surveillance plane to fly thousands of feet above to record every movement of people and vehicles in the city. As early as 2015, we reported that Persistent Surveillance Systems was flying a Cessna 182T Skylane over the streets of Baltimore during the riots. It turned out the plane was a secret FBI aerial surveillance program.…

Massive 30 State, Real-Time ALPR Database Revealed

Our worst fears about automatic license plate readers (ALPR) are much worse than we could have imagined. Two months ago, I warned everyone that police in Arizona were using ALPR’s to “grid” entire neighborhoods. But this story brings public surveillance to a whole new level. Last month, Rekor Systems announced that they had launched the Rekor Public Safety Network (RPSN) which gives law enforcement real-time access to license plates.  “Any state or local law enforcement agency participating in the RPSN will be able to access real-time data from any part of the network at no cost. The Company is initially launching the network…

Show me your face: Google Nest Hub surveillance system lets you bring Big Brother home with you

Google’s Nest Hub surveillance system is constantly looking for its owner’s face and technically can’t be shut off, raising privacy concerns and questions about data misuse by the company that brags it toes the “creepy line.” The latest “smart-home” device from Mountain View comes equipped with a constantly-scanning facial-recognition-enabled camera that can’t be shut off, only ‘disabled’ with a switch that also (supposedly) deactivates the microphone. Just as the device is constantly listening for its “wake word,” it is prepared to leap into action at the sight of its owner’s visage. The Nest Hub, as its name suggests, serves as…

Hong Kong starts blocking VPNs as protests continue

Last week, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam hinted that the country may start using executive orders to force internet service providers (ISPs) to block apps that are used by the protestors. Local ISPs said that the only way to implement these executive orders would be to introduce a large-scale surveillance firewall in the country which would operate in a similar way to the Great Firewall of China by restricting access to certain apps and monitoring internet activity in the country. Today we’re seeing the first signs that this surveillance firewall has started to roll out in Hong Kong with virtual…

Study: The Only Place On Earth More Surveilled Than London Is Communist China

A new study by research website Comparitech has found that London is the 6th most surveilled city on the planet, with the top five cities all being in Communist China. The study looked at 120 cities globally, and found that the top ten with most public CCTV cameras per 1,000 inhabitants were practically all in China. Central Chinese city Chongqing tops the list with 168 public cameras per 1000 inhabitants. The study found that by 2022, China is projected to have one public CCTV camera for every two people Another four Chinese cities, including Shanghai, make up the top five… and then it’s London…

Philosopher Warns Linking Human Brains to Computers Could Lead to “Totalitarian Mind Control”

Linking human consciousness to a computer cloud with the capability of reading everyone’s thoughts simultaneously could lead to “totalitarian mind control,” warns philosopher Slavoj Zizek. With fears growing that artificial intelligence will eventually dominate and maybe even exterminate humanity, Zizek, the senior researcher at the Institute for Sociology and Philosophy at the University of Ljubljana, is sounding the alarm. Zizek pointed out that MIT has already developed a “helmet” that can read your thoughts and reproduce them in writing or an artificial voice. While such technology appears harmless if it is voluntary, Zizek asks what would happen if it was…

It begins: Red flag law to blame for seizure of Connecticut college student’s guns because he posted a meme

As conservative talk radio host and legal expert Mark Levin often reminds his listeners, we are living in “a post-constitutional period” in which our founding document means less and less, thanks to the Left’s constant chipping away at the legal and civil rights protections bequeathed to us by our founders. One of the most egregious assaults on the Bill of Rights in recent years has been the adoption of so-called “red flag laws” by (mostly) Democrat-run states — laws that deprive American citizens of their property and due process rights under the Second and Fifth Amendment. Essentially, this is how…

Trump Administration Considering Social Credit Score System to Determine Who Can Buy a Gun…Would partner with Big Tech to use spy data from Amazon, Google and Apple.

The Trump administration is considering launching a social credit score-style system in coordination with Big Tech that would use spy data collected from Amazon, Google and Apple devices to determine whether or not an individual can own a gun. “The proposal is part of an initiative to create a Health Advanced Research Projects Agency (HARPA), which would be located inside the Health and Human Services Department,” reports the Daily Caller. “The new agency would have a separate budget and the president would be responsible for appointing its director.” HARPA would employ “breakthrough technologies with high specificity and sensitivity for early…

Distracted Driver Cameras To Spread Across North America

Imagine driving down a highway or a city street in North America and wondering if anywhere is safe from Big Brother’s prying eyes. That might soon become a reality if we allow politicians and officials to install distracted driving cameras along every highway and street. An article in iPhone in Canada revealed that an Australian company called Acusensus wants to do just that by expanding Big Brother’s prying eyes to identify distracted drivers in North America. “Acusensus, an Australian company that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to spot distracted drivers, made a pitch at the 2019 International Conference on Urban Traffic Safety in…

Ring Gave Police Stats About Users Who Said ‘No’ to Law Enforcement Requests

Amazon’s home security company Ring tracked how its users responded to law enforcement requests for surveillance footage captured by Ring devices, and it provided overviews of that data to police departments upon request. In emails obtained by Gizmodo, Ring informed a Florida police department about the number of times residents had refused police access to their cameras or ignored their requests altogether. “When Neighbors first launched in the Ring app, initial video request data was analyzed in addition to getting feedback from a few early partners,” a company spokesperson said. “This is not representative of our current policies or the…

The Plan to Use Fitbit Data to Stop Mass Shootings Is One of the Scariest Proposals Yet

In the aftermath of yet another mass shooting in America, loved ones grieve, gun control advocates call for common-sense reforms, and politicians suggest new “solutions” that won’t do anything about guns. These proposals frequently focus on mental health, but a new plan before the White House to monitor “neurobehavioral” predictors of violence isn’t just misguided, it’s terrifyingly dystopian. Last week, the Washington Post reported that the White House had been briefed on a plan to create an agency called HARPA, a healthcare counterpart to the Pentagon’s research and development arm DARPA. Among other initiatives, this new agency would reportedly collect…

TEACH THEM YOUNG: Kids being ordered by government officials to pay sales tax on their small businesses

Twelve-year-old Lucie Wise couldn’t wait to open her own business. On three separate occasions, she had accompanied her mother to the Children’s Entrepreneur Market—an expo of child-run businesses hosted annually by the Utah nonprofit Libertas Institute—dreaming of the day she could set up her own booth and sell her wares to curious passersby. Lucie’s experience as a spectator at prior markets had given her time to think long and hard about what kind of company she wanted to start. Getting a jumpstart on the summer, when she would make her debut at the Children’s Entrepreneur Market, she planted 500 flower…

You can now find out if Amazon’s Ring has partnered with your local police

Ring has released an official map detailing every police department that’s partnered with it, showing how widely and rapidly it’s been cozying up to law enforcement. The map lets you see if your local police force is one of hundreds working with Amazon-owned video doorbell company. The Active Law Enforcement Map, released Wednesday, shows every police partnership with Ring in the US, along with details on when the departments joined. Ring released the map after extensive reporting from CNET, Motherboard and Gizmodo on its close ties to local police.  At the time of this article’s publication, the map showed 405 police departments…

American And Chinese Cities Lead The World In Spying On People

It is no longer speculation, American law enforcement has been lying to the public about the expansion of CCTV camera surveillance. A recent report released by CompariTech confirmed what I have been warning people about for years: American law enforcement has become a world leader in spying on its citizens. “Cities in China are under the heaviest CCTV surveillance in the world, according to a new analysis by Comparitech. However, some residents living in cities across the US, UK, UAE, Australia, and India will also find themselves surrounded by a large number of watchful eyes, as our look at the…

Why the CIA doesn’t spy on the UAE

The United Arab Emirates finances the military leader trying to topple a United Nations-recognized government in Libya. It helps lead a coalition of nations imposing an economic blockade of Qatar, despite US calls to resolve the dispute. It hired former staffers of the US National Security Agency as elite hackers to spy in a program that included Americans as surveillance targets, a Reuters investigation found this year. And yet, in a highly unusual practice, the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) does not spy on the UAE’s government, three former CIA officials familiar with the matter told Reuters, creating what some…

They want your BLOOD: Big Tech plot to surveil your blood and DNA exposed

Fraudster Elizabeth Holmes — who was once featured on the cover of Fortune Magazine and celebrated as the next Steve Jobs — scammed hundreds of millions of dollars from wealthy investors (mostly older men who were easily hypnotized by a younger woman) to create a company called Theranos. Theranos promised to miniaturize hundreds of clinical blood tests, claiming to be able to run all these tests from a single drop of blood, using an automated machine that would sit in your home for daily use. The marketing of this machine — dubbed the Edison — imagined people donating a drop…

Gloucester Township Police’s new 911eye emergency dispatch system lets emergency service operators see video live-streamed from a caller’s phone.

A New Jersey police department has unveiled technology that allows 911 operators to stream video from callers’ smartphones. Sounds like a good idea, at first – but where does the surveillance stop? Gloucester Township Police’s new 911eye emergency dispatch system lets emergency service operators see video live-streamed from a caller’s phone, giving first responders an idea of what they’re getting into before anyone is sent to the scene. For now, the caller has to activate the livestream with a link sent by the 911 dispatcher, which allows operators to use the phone’s camera and microphone. But this is the first…

Zendrive Can Turn Drivers Smartphones Into Insurance Surveillance Devices

Leave it to Zendrive to create a safe driving app that can turn your smartphone into an insurance surveillance device. Zendrive encourages people and companies to download their safe driving app which uses a person’s smartphone to detect unsafe driving habits. Their video claims that they do not track or identify individual drivers, but towards the end of the video they boast that “it is easy to identify, coach and improve unsafe drivers.” Their “How It Works” section reveals how Zendrive uses a person’s own smartphone to measure driving behavior, detect collisions, risky phone use, aggressive driving, distracted driving, and more.…

Silicon Valley is building a Chinese-style social credit system…In China, scoring citizens’ behavior is official government policy. U.S. companies are increasingly doing something similar, outside the law.

Have you heard about China’s social credit system? It’s a technology-enabled, surveillance-based nationwide program designed to nudge citizens toward better behavior. The ultimate goal is to “allow the trustworthy to roam everywhere under heaven while making it hard for the discredited to take a single step,” according to the Chinese government. In place since 2014, the social credit system is a work in progress that could evolve by next year into a single, nationwide point system for all Chinese citizens, akin to a financial credit score. It aims to punish for transgressions that can include membership in or support for…

Mind-reading technology is closer than you think

Try to remember every thought that crossed your mind at work today—from the benign, like what to have for lunch, to the inflammatory, like why that supervisor is such a jerk. Now imagine if your boss had access to all of those thoughts and feelings. Sounds crazy, right? It’s rapidly becoming closer to reality. Tesla founder Elon Musk’s company Neuralink just this summer announced that human trials will move forward next year for an implantable device that can read a user’s mind; scientists at UCSF recently released the results of a brain activity study, backed by Facebook, that shows it’s…

Amazon’s Facial Recognition Able to Detect Fear as Updates to Controversial Tool Revealed

Earlier in August Amazon Web Services said that its Rekognition tool can now detect violent content such as blood, wounds, weapons, self-injury, corpses, as well as sexually explicit content, while fending off concerns regarding its potential use in surveillance and privacy violation. Amazon Web Services (AWS) has added several new features to its facial-recognition software, Rekognition, including expanded age and gender recognition capabilities, and the new ability to recognise fear, the tech giant announced in a blog post on 12 August. “With this release, we have further improved the accuracy of gender identification. In addition, we have improved accuracy for…

Police Used Streetlamps To Spy On The Public More Than 140 Times

Gone are the days when cities used streetlamps to simply illuminate sidewalks and streets. Today’s streetlamps are being used to form an inter-connected web of surveillance devices. A recent San Diego Union-Tribunearticle revealed how San Diego police officers have used streetlamp video surveillance in at least 140 cases and sometimes as frequently as 20 times a month. Let that sink in for a moment; spying streetlamps are real and police have already requested video footage from more than 140 streetlamps. Lt. Jeffery Jordon called spying streetlamps “game changing” and that is exactly how they should be viewed. Streetlamps that are designed to…

Pampers launches a ‘smart diaper’ that tracks sleep and pee

The smart diaper wars have truly begun. Today, Pampers unveiled Lumi, an all-in-one connected system that includes two activity sensors for diapers, a Logitech camera fashioned into a Wi-Fi baby monitor and an app that wraps everything together. It follows Huggies adoption of the Monit smart diaper sensor in Korea. But Pampers, perhaps aware that a smart diaper alone isn’t enough to entice consumers, is aiming for something a bit more expansive. The Lumi system is meant to make an infant’s first year easier for parents by delivering as much data as possible. In addition to just telling you when…

Video: Elon Musk Is Developing a Bluetooth-Enabled Brain Implant… Directly linking thoughts to a phone via Bluetooth — what could go wrong?

Directly linking thoughts to a phone via Bluetooth — what could go wrong? Technologist Elon Musk has unveiled a plan for embedding Bluetooth-enabled implants into a human brain, to enable disabled persons to regain motor and cognitive function. IT experts however noted that along with FDA approval, the idea faces hurdles in the form of significant scrutiny on the cybersecurity front. Neuralink devices are tiny chips that would be interconnected with the brain’s organic neural network via 1,000 wispy wires measuring one-tenth the width of a human hair. They would be implanted by a DARPA-developed “sewing robot”, who, while the…

Google’s File on You is 10 Times Bigger Than Facebook’s — Here’s How to View It

With all the attention paid to Facebook in recent weeks over ‘data breaches’ and privacy violations (even though what happened with Cambridge Analytica is part of their standard business model), it’s easy to forget that there are four other Big Tech corporations collecting just as much — if not more — of our personal info. Google, Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft are all central players in “surveillance capitalism” and prey on our data. New reports suggest that Google may actually harvest ten times as much as Facebook. Curious about just how much of his data Google had, web developer Dylan Curran says he downloaded his…

Facebook Wants To Read Your Mind

Facebook is one step closer to reading your mind. The social media giant has become one step closer to developing a working brain-computer interface, capable of reading users’ thoughts. CNBC reported that Facebook has taken yet another step in developing its brain-computer interface, with the company’s Reality Labs division working alongside researchers from the University of California, San Francisco to develop a device that can decode speech directly from the human brain onto a screen. A new report published in the journal Nature Communications reveals that researchers are becoming closer than ever to connecting human brains directly to computers. Researchers reportedly worked with…

Meet the classified artificial brain being developed by US intelligence programs

At the final session of the 2019 Space Symposium in Colorado Springs, attendees straggled into a giant ballroom to listen to an Air Force official and a National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) executive discuss, as the panel title put it, “Enterprise Disruption.” The presentation stayed as vague as the title until a direct question from the audience seemed to make the panelists squirm. Just how good, the person wondered, had the military and intelligence communities’ algorithms gotten at interpreting data and taking action based on that analysis? They pointed out that the commercial satellite industry has software that can tally shipping…

Pentagram testing mass surveillance balloons across the US

The US military is conducting wide-area surveillance tests across six midwest states using experimental high-altitude balloons, documents filed with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reveal. Up to 25 unmanned solar-powered balloons are being launched from rural South Dakota and drifting 250 miles through an area spanning portions of Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin and Missouri, before concluding in central Illinois. Travelling in the stratosphere at altitudes of up to 65,000ft, the balloons are intended to “provide a persistent surveillance system to locate and deter narcotic trafficking and homeland security threats”, according to a filing made on behalf of the Sierra Nevada Corporation,…

Fujifilm’s first surveillance camera can read a license plate from 1km away

Fujifilm is getting into surveillance cameras with the SX800, a long-range surveillance camera with a 40x optical zoom that’s designed to offer security at international borders and large commercial facilities. It’s got a built-in lens with a 35mm-equivalent focal length of 20mm to 800mm, and an additional digital zoom of 1.25x. Combined, Fujifilm says this gives the SX800 a total equivalent focal length of 1000mm, which is enough to focus on a car’s license plate from 1km or roughly 0.6 miles away. We’ve seen consumer cameras with support for more zoom than this in the past (Nikon’s P1000 has a…

Jacksons Convenient Stores Use Cop-Run Facial Recognition Cameras To Identify Customers

Two years ago, I wrote about the dangers of a cop-run company that profits from installing facial recognition cameras in retail stores. But few people took notice. Blue Line Technology’s (BLT) “about” page makes no effort to hide the fact that a bunch of former police and military professionals want to put facial recognition in retail stores across the country. “Blue Line Technology was launched by retired law enforcement and military professionals to be an industry leader in both threat detection and access control.” A recent article in the Seattle Timesrevealed that BLT is one step closer to realizing their goal because the…

Does Facial Recognition Technology Make You Grimace? New Website Offers Map of Where It’s Being Used by Law Enforcement and How to Get It Banned.

Think law enforcement using facial recognition technology to catch criminals isn’t a big deal?  You may want to review new website  – Ban Facial Recognition – and reevaluate your position.  According to it: Facial recognition surveillance programs identify the wrong person up to 98% of the time. These errors have real-world impacts, including harassment, wrongful imprisonment, and deportation. Facial recognition software programmatically misidentifies people of color, women, and children —supercharging discrimination and putting vulnerable people at greater risk of systemic abuse. Once our biometric information is collected and stored in government databases, it’s an easy target for identity thieves or…

NSA Whistleblower Speaks About Julian Assange & The “Shadow Government”

Even to this day, if you tell most people there is an ‘invisible government,’ or a shadow government that’s international in scope, they may call you a conspiracy theorist or give you a funny look. This is in large part due to the lack of education, particularly self education, of a population who is trained to go to school, get a job and ‘enjoy’ life. Sure, that’s all fine and dandy, but to deny and condemn a thought or an idea without any investigation is definitely the height of ignorance. Not only is it the height of ignorance, it also…

Facebook and Google track what porn you’re watching, even when you’re in incognito

Facebook, Google, and Oracle are tracking the porn you watch, according to a new study first spotted by The New York Times. Researchers from Microsoft, Carnegie Mellon, and the University of Pennsylvania analyzed 22,484 pornography sites using a tool called webXray to identify tracking tools feeding data back to third parties. “Our results indicate tracking is endemic on pornography websites: 93% of pages leak user data to a third-party,” the study concludes. Of the sites scanned in March 2018, the study found Google or its subsidiaries had trackers on 74%, Oracle on 24%, and Facebook on 10%. That translates to…

Report: Israeli surveillance tool can silently collect all iCloud data for a targeted user

Apple is facing a new security threat, thanks to developments in the spyware/surveillance tool sold by the Israeli firm NSO Group. Via the Financial Times, the Pegasus phone software now not only harvests data from the user’s onboard storage, but also all communications with the connected cloud. The vulnerability purportedly affects the iPhone and Apple’s iCloud as well as Google Android phones, and even third-party apps installed on the phone that communicate over “encrypted and secure” connections. The spyware is sold by NSO Group is supposedly only sold to governments to assist with crime investigations, but there are fears that…

The FBI plans more social media surveillance

The FBI wants to gather more information from social media. Today, it issued a call for contracts for a new social media monitoring tool. According to a request-for-proposals (RFP), it’s looking for an “early alerting tool” that would help it monitor terrorist groups, domestic threats, criminal activity and the like. The tool would provide the FBI with access to the full social media profiles of persons-of-interest. That could include information like user IDs, emails, IP addresses and telephone numbers. The tool would also allow the FBI to track people based on location, enable persistent keyword monitoring and provide access to…

Police Using License Plate Readers To “Grid” Entire Neighborhoods

Law enforcement is using license plate readers to “grid” entire neighborhoods. So, What does gridding mean? The Arizona Mirror describes gridding as: “Part of the training for the ALPR systems, Chandler police officers are taught to “grid” neighborhoods during their downtime – systematically driving up and down every street in an area, indiscriminately scooping up information on vehicles.” Gridding entire neighborhoods allows Big Brother to form a detailed and highly accurate pattern of everyone’s driving habits day and night, 24/7. Police gridding allows Big Brother to create secret mini-surveillance zones of entire neighborhoods. American police “gathering intel” on the public is a mirror-image…

Police Use License Plate Readers To “Grid” Entire Neighborhoods

Law enforcement is using license plate readers to “grid” entire neighborhoods. What does gridding mean? The Arizona Mirror describes gridding as, Part of the training for the ALPR systems, Chandler police officers are taught to “grid” neighborhoods during their downtime – systematically driving up and down every street in an area, indiscriminately scooping up information on vehicles. Gridding entire neighborhoods allows Big Brother to form a detailed and highly accurate pattern of everyone’s driving habits day and night, 24/7. Police use “grids” to gather intel & create mini-surveillance zones Police gridding allows Big Brother to create secret mini-surveillance zones of entire…

Google employees are systematically listening to audio files recorded by Google Home smart speakers and the Google Assistant smartphone app

Since Google launched its Google Home device in 2016, millions of people have installed one of these smart speaker devices at home or in their office. You can ask it all sorts of trivial questions. If you ask ‘Okay Google, how’s the traffic heading towards Brussels?’, the device automatically switches on and a computer voice will read out the latest traffic information. Seems very useful, right? You can do the same thing with the Google Assistant app on your smartphone, comparable to Apple’s Siri. Everything is recorded Not everyone is aware of the fact that everything you say to your…

License Plate Readers Are Creeping Into Neighborhoods Across the Country…Cheap surveillance software is changing how landlords manage their tenants and what laws police can enforce.

Clayton Burnett seems like an unlikely candidate to run a cutting-edge surveillance system. He is not an FBI agent, nor does he investigate homicides for the NYPD. Burnett is the director of innovation and new technology at Watchtower Security, a private company that contracts with property managers—hundreds of them—in low-income communities across the U.S. About three years ago, his company started contracting with OpenALPR, a startup whose software lets users track people by their license plates. “The price point was very reasonable for us,” Burnett says, so now Watchtower has more than 475 cameras scattered across its properties—he says they…

Spat Over New EU-US Data Sharing Pact Hits EU High Court

Bringing down one data agreement between the European Union and the United States wasn’t enough for privacy enthusiast Max Schrems, who appeared before the European Court of Justice on Tuesday in his nearly 10-year legal battle over Facebook. As a university student, the Austrian requested his data from Facebook as part of a class project and was surprised by just how much information the social networking site had on him. Unhappy with how Facebook maintained that data, he sued the social media giant in Ireland, where the company had its European headquarters, in 2011. He filed a second lawsuit in…

Gen Z Adults Encourage Each Other To Sign Up For Facial Recognition At Music Festivals

What is wrong with the above picture? A lot. The picture shows just how complicit the mass media has become in convincing Generation Z (Gen Z) adults into accepting TSA-style checkpoints at public venues. USA Today’s caption says it all, “Annabel Hess, right, signed up for PreCheck at an RV outside the gates of the Country LakeShake music festival in Chicago in late June at the urging of her roommate Catie Hjerpe, left.” USA Today’s reporter Dawn Gilberston, offers a disturbing glimpse into the mass media’s collusion with TSA-style checkpoints at public venues. The story describes how happy a young…

INSTAGRAM to warn users BEFORE posting ‘mean’ comments…

Adam Mosseri, the head of Facebook-owned Instagram, said the company is willing to make decisions that keep its users safe from online bullying, even if it leads to decreased usage. “We will make decisions that mean people use Instagram less if it keeps people more safe,” Mosseri told Time in an article published Monday. Mosseri has made combatting online bullying a top priority since he took over the reigns for Instagram in October. Instagram on Monday announced the launch of a new AI feature that will notify users when a comment they write could be considered offensive before they post…

More than 1,000 Android apps harvest data even after you deny permissions

Permissions on Android apps are intended to be gatekeepers for how much data your device gives up. If you don’t want a flashlight app to be able to read through your call logs, you should be able to deny that access. But even when you say no, many apps find a way around: Researchers discovered more than 1,000 apps that skirted restrictions, allowing them to gather precise geolocation data and phone identifiers behind your back. The discovery highlights how difficult it is to stay private online, particularly if you’re attached to your phones and mobile apps. Tech companies have mountains…

Facebook harvests your highly sensitive personal info with help from dozens of popular apps

At least eleven popular apps are working with Facebook to harvest your highly sensitive personal information. According to a Wall Street Journal investigation, this has been occurring covertly, without user consent. It has been happening to people who do not even have a Facebook account. According to the investigation, Facebook is gathering information about your ovulation cycle, your pregnancy status, your heart rate, and the intimate details about your future home purchases. Apps such as Flo Period & Ovulation Tracker and Instant Heart Rate: HR Monitor have been gathering sensitive information about your health, including height, weight, blood pressure, menstruation…

Philly Park Officials Criticized for Installing Devices That Blare High-Frequency Noise at Young People

There is growing criticism of Philadelphia officials’ decision to install sonic devices called the Mosquito that constantly emit extremely loud, high-frequency noise from 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. every night designed to be audible only to persons aged 13 to 25, according to a Friday report by NPR’s Morning Edition. The working principle behind the devices, produced by Vancouver-based Moving Sound Technologies (MST), is that older people cannot hear such high frequencies due to hearing loss from ageing and noise pollution, though that is far from universal. The Mosquito emits an awful sound in the 17.5 to 18.5 kilohertz range…

Facebook puts “hate speech” in the same category as terrorism, will hand over user data to French authorities

The anger that governments have decided to pile onto Facebook – sometimes for all the wrong reasons from the point of view of regular users – is not lost on the tech giant. This has resulted in “a world first,” as Reuters termed it, that will see the global social media platform give the French government personal data of French people suspected of engaging in so-called “hate speech.” The announcement came after a series of meetings between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and French President Emmanuel Macron – who apparently has succeeded where the British Parliament in the past failed to…

FamilyTreeDNA is urging consumers to share genetic information with law enforcement

DNA testing company FamilyTreeDNA is urging consumers to share genetic information with law enforcement, promising that the data could help solve crimes. More than 26 million people have used consumer genetic tests to learn about their ancestry, connect with family members, and identify health risks. They should think twice before making themselves and their relatives unanticipated subjects in a criminal lineup. When used appropriately, technology can provide substantial benefits to law enforcement agencies, victims, and society. Genetic testing of crime scene DNA evidence — a technique utilized by police since the 1980s — can be a powerful tool to catch…

Steve Forbes urges Mark Zuckerburg to change the name of hit crypto currency from the Libra to the MARK

Dear Mr. Zuckerberg: Your company made big headlines when it announced it would be launching a cryptocurrency called the Libra in 2020. Not surprisingly, given the nature of the times, the project has been greeted with intense criticism and skepticism. Don’t lose heart. In one sense, the idea of a company creating its own kind of money is an old one. The airlines’ frequent-flier miles are really a form of money that customers can earn and use to buy trips and various other things. Credit card companies, hotels and numerous retailers have all sorts of loyalty programs in which people…

Hold on to your old cars…

You’d think that luxury automakers would load their cars with safety tech by default, but that’s not always the case — it hasn’t been for Lexus, anyway. However, the company is making amends for that shortfall. It’s making its Safety System+ a standard feature for all its vehicles, starting with the 2020 model year. These camera- and radar-based features aren’t particularly new, but some of them have been reserved as options (or for higher-end models) until now. Pre-collision alerts and braking may be the most practical — they can slow or even stop the car to avoid crashes, including with…

With a single wiretap, police collected 9.2 million text messages

For four months in 2018, authorities in Texas collected more than 9.2 million messages under a single court-authorized wiretap order, newly released figures show. The wiretap, granted by a federal judge in the Southern District of Texas, was granted as part of a narcotics investigation and became the federal wiretap with the most intercepts in 2018, according to the government’s annual wiretap report. Little is known about the case, except that 149 individuals involved in the case were targeted by the wiretap.  The wiretap expired last year, allowing the judiciary to disclose the case. To date, no arrests have been…

Big Brother To Force You To Stop At A Red Light

Forget backseat drivers; hell forget annoying front seat passengers, because soon your car will force you to stop at a red light. BMW’s NextGen cars will be equipped with the industry’s first ever adaptive cruise control system that recognizes traffic lights. According to BMW’s blog, they tested an M340i on Munich’s city streets, with the cruise control set to 30 km/h. The car was able to recognize a traffic light turning yellow, slow down and come to a complete stop as the light turned red. BMW claims their “Urban Traffic Light Recognition” will bring a car to a complete stop at speeds of up…

Gillette Stadium’s Facial Recognition Can Identify Fans Before They Enter The Stadium

One of the NFL’s premiere franchises, the New England Patriots is using “Evolve Edge” millimeter wave/facial recognition scanners to identify fans before they enter Gillette Stadium.  According to Evolv Edge’s brochure, their scanners use facial recognition to identify everyone. “The automated, consistent screening eliminates guard fatigue and subjectivity so there’s fewer complaints and no profiling while providing better threat detection. The system can scan everyone and their bag including those with medical devices and pregnant women. In addition, facial recognition can be integrated to identify people who are prohibited from an environment.” Evolv’s scanners are designed to make it easy for private corporations…

NSA Again Exposed For Unauthorized Collection Of Americans’ Phone Records

Yet again, the National Security Agency has been exposed for “accidentally overcollecting” call-record metadata of millions of Americans. According to a WSJ report that relied on documents obtained by the ACLU, the NSA received metadata records from an unnamed phone company that the agency hadn’t been authorized to collect. According to the report, it’s unclear how the overcollection occurred, but the incident took place after the NSA said it had purged hundreds of millions of metadata records it had amassed since 2015 in a separate overcollection episode. For those who aren’t familiar with the concept, “Metadata” include the numbers called…

Facebook Unveils Invasive & Dangerous Form Of Surveillance: Libra Cryptocurrency

Those skeptical of Facebook’s creation of their own cryptocurrency have every right to be.  The new cryptocurrency, which has been named Libra, has been unveiled, and it’s a dangerous and invasive form of surveillance in the hands of a company known for its privacy concerns and censorship. Experts have branded the move a dangerous power grab that marks Facebook’s “most invasive” form of surveillance yet. So far, Facebook has enlisted 28 firms, including Spotify and Uber, who each had to invest a minimum of $1o million to be a founding member of the Libra Association, an independent not-for-profit membership organization.…

FLASHBACK: CIA Chief: We’ll Spy on You Through Your Dishwasher

More and more personal and household devices are connecting to the internet, from your television to your car navigation systems to your light switches. CIA Director David Petraeus cannot wait to spy on you through them. Earlier this month, Petraeus mused about the emergence of an “Internet of Things” – that is, wired devices – at a summit for In-Q-Tel, the CIA’s venture capital firm. “‘Transformational’ is an overused word, but I do believe it properly applies to these technologies,” Petraeus enthused, “particularly to their effect on clandestine tradecraft.” All those new online devices are a treasure trove of data…

Amazon got clearance to build drones that can carry out surveillance on customers’ homes between deliveries

As Amazon edges closer to making its drone delivery dreams a reality, the company just got a patent approved to let it build drones for on-demand surveillance. The patent was submitted by Amazon in 2015 and granted approval earlier this month, as first spotted by Quartz. The patent describes how delivery drones could drop in on consenting customers’ houses to check them for things like open garage doors, graffiti, or even a fire. In order to safeguard the security of neigboring houses, which haven’t given their permission to be filmed by the drones, the patent stipulates that geofencing technology could…

Google Chrome has become surveillance software. It’s time to switch.

You open your browser to look at the Web. Do you know who is looking back at you? Over a recent week of Web surfing, I peered under the hood of Google Chrome and found it brought along a few thousand friends. Shopping, news and even government sites quietly tagged my browser to let ad and data companies ride shotgun while I clicked around the Web. This was made possible by the Web’s biggest snoop of all: Google. Seen from the inside, its Chrome browser looks a lot like surveillance software. Lately I’ve been investigating the secret life of my…

Spying Police Robots (Daleks) Coming To A City Near You

Six years ago, I predicted that Knightscope robots (Daleks) might replace police officers and it appears, that I was right. According to CBS Los Angeles, the Huntington Park Police Department is using a Knightscope K5 robot to patrol public areas like parks and city buildings. The Huntington Park Police robot, dubbed “HP Robocop” comes equipped with 360-degree high-definition cameras that allow police officers to spy on people in public places. According to KTLA 5, Mayor Karina Macias is very excited to have police robots spy on people, “I’m very excited that we can officially call on HP RoboCop to help our police officers patrol…

The U.S. Marine Corps Turned San Diego Into A Massive Chinese-Style Smart City

Earlier this year, I warned people that the city of San Diego had been turned into a massive Chinese-Style public surveillance network, complete with facial recognition, spying streetlights, license plate readers and a police-run public watchlisting network. But what I failed to mention is who is really behind it A disturbing news release from the City of San Diego, revealed that the U.S. military is actually helping transform San Diego into a Chinese-Style Smart City. The City of San Diego, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer and Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Vincent A. Coglianese signed a Memorandum of Understanding to work together on “Smart City” technologies such as unmanned…